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DCI Banks

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DCI Banks

DCI Banks
Intertitle (2011–)
Genre Crime drama
Starring Stephen Tompkinson
Andrea Lowe
Caroline Catz
Lorraine Burroughs
Jack Deam
Tom Shaw (2011)
Colin Tierney (2010-2011)
Composer(s) Sheridan Tongue[1]
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 14 (List of episodes)
Executive producer(s) Andy Harries
Francis Hopkinson
Producer(s) Stephen Smallwoad
Running time 45 minutes (x2)
Production companies Left Bank Pictures
Original channel ITV, STV, UTV
Original run 27 September 2010 (2010-09-27) – present

DCI Banks is a British crime drama series produced by Left Bank Pictures for the ITV network. The series is based on Peter Robinson's Inspector Alan Banks novels and stars Stephen Tompkinson as Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks.[2]


In January 2010, author Peter Robinson announced that he had signed a joint deal with Left Bank Pictures and ITV to adapt novels from the Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks series for television.[3]


Filming on a two-part pilot based on the novel Aftermath was completed in July 2010, with scenes filmed on location in Leeds. DCI Banks: Aftermath aired on ITV, STV & UTV 27 September and 4 October 2010.[3] The two episodes drew a strong average of 6.55 million viewers, twice becoming the fifth most-watched programme on the ITV network that week.[4] Viewer ratings for the pilot were strong enough to persuade ITV to commission a series of six episodes — three two-part dramas adapted from three Robinson novels.

Series 1

The first full series consisted of three two-part dramas based on three Peter Robinson novels. Filming began in February 2011, and included locations in Otley for Friend Of The Devil. This was identifiable by the fact that some shop names in the town were left unchanged during filming.[5][6] The first episode, Playing With Fire, aired 16 September 2011, and drew an average of 4.5 million viewers.[7] The subsequent two 2-part dramas, Friend of The Devil and Cold is The Grave, achieved similar ratings.

Series 2

The viewing figures for the first series were large enough for ITV to commission a second series. Filming began in March 2012, and episodes began broadcasting from 10 October.[8] For this series, the novels Dry Bones That Dream,[9] Innocent Graves[10] and Strange Affair were adapted.[11] With actress Andrea Lowe taking maternity leave, Stephen Tompkinson was joined by Caroline Catz in the role of DI Helen Morton, a character who does not appear in the novels.[12]

Sally Haynes, head of the ITV Drama commissioning team, said of the second series: "DCI Banks is now established as a firm favourite within ITV's crime drama slate. We're delighted so many viewers are appreciating Robert Murphy’s adaptations and how the team at Left Bank Pictures are producing DCI Banks."[12]

Series 3

On 1 December 2012, Peter Robinson announced on his website "[13] that DCI Banks has been recommissioned for a third series of six one-hour episodes (again, three two-parters), according to a revised statement posted June 17, 2013, based on three books: Wednesday’s Child, Piece of My Heart and Bad Boy. The revised announcement stated that filming would begin in August 2013, for broadcast dates dates to be confirmed in the future. In January 2013, Stephen Tompkinson mentioned in an interview "I’m pleased to say [DCI Banks has] recently been commissioned for a third series, which should start filming later in the year,"[14] and in a subsequent interview he revealed "I'm delighted to let you know that in series three [DCI Alan] Banks will be assisted by both Annie and Helen,"[15] indicating that both Andrea Lowe and Caroline Catz will be returning. Peter Robinson's site confirms that both actresses will be returning: "DS Cabot, played by Andrea Lowe, will be returning from maternity leave, and Caroline Catz will be back as DI Helen Morton." Describing the character of Alan Banks, Tompkinson said, "He is heavily reliant on his team and a great, almost patrician leader."[15]


On 24 June 2013, at the award ceremony for the Royal Television Society (RTS) Yorkshire Centre Awards 2013, Stephen Tompkinson accepted the award for 'Best Drama' for DCI Banks, Left Bank Pictures for ITV.[16]

International distribution

On 9 January 2013, BBC Worldwide America announced a "landmark syndication deal" with public television stations in the U.S. for DCI Banks to be available on 166 PBS affiliate stations across the USA, "reaching an estimated 77% of U.S. TV households." The syndication deal includes the pilot and Series 1 and 2. The announcement stated that DCI Banks would premiere on public television stations across the U.S., including WUSF (Tampa, Florida), KERA (Dallas, Texas), WMVS (Milwaukee, Wisconsin) and KCET (Los Angeles, California), starting in January 2013. It has also aired on PBS stations in many other states. Idaho Public Television created a website for the show and posted all the episodes to be streamed on demand by those in the U.S. Although each drama was shown in two parts over two weeks in the UK, on PBS they have been shown as single 90-minute dramas. Julius Cain of BBC Worldwide America, said: “This syndication deal marks the largest we have inked to date between BBC Worldwide America and public television stations."[17]

"DCI Banks" has also been broadcast in Canada and it aired in Norway on NRK1. In Sweden, national public service broadcaster SVT aired the pilot and three Series 1 episodes (each about 90 minutes in length). Similar airings occurred in Denmark. The pilot and Series 1 have also been aired in Finland (YLE1). In Estonia, national public service broadcaster ETV aired the pilot and Series 1 in autumn 2012 with Series 2 due to be aired in the end of September 2013. Series 1 was aired in Germany ([ZDF]) in 3 episodes of 90 minutes each between 26 May and 9 June 2013 under the title "Inspector Banks".

In Australia the show has aired on subscription TV channel, UKTV,[18] and in May 2013, began screening on free-to-air station ABC1.[19]

DVD releases

The Series 1 DVD was released for Region 2 (UK) on 31 October 2011.[5] The two disc-set features the pilot Aftermath and the three two-part dramas of Series 1. Extra features include some deleted scenes and short interviews with Stephen Tompkinson and Andrea Lowe, who plays DS Annie Cabbot.

The Region 2 DVD of Series 2 was released in the UK 19 November 2012, and contains three two-part dramas.[20]

Panvision has published DVDs of the pilot and Series 1 with subtitles in Swedish, Danish, Norwegian and Finnish.


In an article written for The Telegraph when the pilot DCI Banks: Aftermath first aired in the UK, Peter Robinson wrote:

"A lot of people asked me about the casting of Stephen Tompkinson as Banks....I met Stephen early on in the process, and he wanted to...find out everything he could from me about the character. I was impressed by his dedication, and when I finally saw him 'in character' I thought he managed to convey the essence of Banks. Stephen is taller than the Banks in the books, and my Annie is a brunette, whereas Andrea Lowe plays her as a blonde. It doesn't matter. You can't expect exact duplication. No actor is going to satisfy everybody's image of the way a fictional character should look, but that doesn’t mean he or she can't capture that character's spirit."[21]
Character Actor Duration Notes
DCI Alan Banks Stephen Tompkinson 2010– Alan is one of the most experienced officers on his division. He has been in the force for over twenty years, and has investigated more cases than the rest of his team put together. Basically, he has seen it all.
DI Helen Morton Caroline Catz 2012– Helen is a happily-married mother of four growing boys, and a serious-minded senior detective who’s more at home in front of a computer than in front of a suspect, and whose approach to policing pushes Banks to the brink. Morton arrives in Strange Affair to cover for DS Annie Cabbot, who is forced to take early maternity leave, after Cabbot attempts to shield Alan Banks from the evidence of his brother's transgressions.
DS Annie Cabbot Andrea Lowe 2010– Annie arrives from professional standards to investigate an assault on Marcus Payne in Aftermath. She strikes up a relationship with Banks, and decides to transfer to his division when a post becomes available. Cabbot only appears in the first episode of series two due to actress Andrea Lowe taking maternity leave. However, she will reportedly return for series three.[8]
DS Winsome Jackman Lorraine Burroughs 2010– Winsome, also known as Win or Winnie, is a young sergeant who has been one of Banks' protégés for some time. She and Ken Blackstone started in the job on the same day, and previously worked together at another nick.
DS Ken Blackstone Jack Deam 2010– Ken is an experienced sergeant who trained Winsome Jackman when she was merely a constable. He transferred away from his previous station a year after Winnie accepted a position in Banks' Eastvale division.
DC Kevin Templeton Tom Shaw 2011 Kevin was a young constable who had only been in the job for six months. In an attempt to gain evidence on a serial killer, he put himself undercover, but was subsequently murdered in Friend of the Devil.
Ch. Supt. Ron McLaughlin Nick Sidi 2012– Ron takes charge of Banks' division following the departure of his predecessor, Gerry Rydell. He is given the superintendent's job on the recommendation of the chief commissioner. He first appears in Cold is the Grave.
Ch. Supt. Gerry Rydell Colin Tierney 2010–2011 Gerry, a high-flying officer who had risen his way through the ranks, found himself as Superintendent just two years after he joined the force. He was found to be corrupt and subsequently resigned in Cold is the Grave.



Episode Title Based on Directed by Written by Viewers
1-2 "Aftermath" AftermathJames HawesRobert Murphy6.66
27 September 2010 (2010-09-27)
4 October 2010 (2010-10-04)
An officer is killed while responding to a domestic disturbance call. His partner subdues the killer, Marcus Payne, but Payne ends up in a coma. When DCI Banks investigates the grisly scene, he discovers it's the home of a serial rapist and murderer. The victims of four open cases are buried in the cellar. The fifth is missing and may still be alive, and Banks is haunted by the desire to find her. DS Annie Cabbot is investigating for Professional Standards the apparently extreme assault on Marcus Payne, who has died from his injuries. Banks suspects Payne's wife Lucy is complicit in the murders, while Cabbot must prove that the second officer used excessive force. When Lucy's true identity is revealed, it complicates the case, but does not deter Banks from his goal. 

Series One

Episode Title Based on Directed by Written by Viewers
3-4 "Playing With Fire" Playing With FirePaul WhittingtonRobert Murphy5.10
16 September 2011 (2011-09-16)
23 September 2011 (2011-09-23)
Two bodies are found after a fatal fire on two narrow boats. Police suspect arson, and the discovery of a forged Turner landscape leads DCI Banks and DS Cabbot to connect the victims to an art forgery scam. Cabbot becomes involved with art expert Mark Keane, who is assisting with the investigation. Banks, meanwhile, suspects that Patrick Aspern, father of one of the victims, is deliberately withholding vital information. A third victim is discovered and Banks, the subject of a possible complaint by the Asperns, is determined to identify the man behind the art forgery scam. Cabbot's relationship with Keane makes her a target for the killer, with nearly disastrous consequences. 
5-6 "Friend Of The Devil" Friend of the DevilBill AndersonRobert Murphy4.66
30 September 2011
7 October 2011

DCI Banks assigns DS Cabbot as Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) on a case involving the mutilated body of a woman found on the Yorkshire moors, while he investigates the murder of teenager Hayley Daniels, whose body has been found in a storage room in a dark alleyway. Cabbot discovers that her victim was Lucy Payne. When their colleague DC Templeton's body is discovered in the same alleyway, killed in the same way as Lucy, Cabbot becomes convinced that the murders are connected. The suspect in the Daniels murder case is cleared, so Banks must establish how the real killer was able to avoid detection.

Last appearance of DC Kevin Templeton 
7-8 "Cold Is The Grave" Cold is the GraveMarek LoseyRobert Murphy5.82
14 October 2011
21 October 2011

A man commits an armed robbery and is then brutally murdered. Meanwhile, DCI Banks' boss, Chief Superintendent Rydell wants Banks to find and bring home his runaway teenage daughter, Emily. DS Cabbot becomes convinced the robbery was staged. Banks shepherds Emily away from criminal Barry Clough in London and returns her to her family, but he's shocked when she turns up dead shortly afterward, appearing as though she's been brutally beaten. Inquiries seem to reveal a connection between the two murders, and Banks and Cabbot come to suspect one of their team may be implicated in a criminal conspiracy.

Last appearance of Ch. Supt. Gerry Rydell 

Series Two

Filming on Series 2 began in March 2012, and episodes began broadcasting from 10 October. Accompanying novels, with cover photos of Stephen Tompkinson, were released for sale on 25 October.[22] Several new characters were introduced in Series 2, including Alan Banks' parents, Arthur (Keith Barron) and Ida Banks (Polly Hemmingway); DI Helen Morton (Caroline Catz), who fills in for DS Annie Cabbot while she is on maternity leave; and Chief Superintendent (CS) Ron McLaughlin (Nick Sidi), replacement for CS Gerry Rydell, who resigned when exposed as being corrupt at the end of Series 1. Actress Andrea Lowe actually took maternity leave during filming of most of Series 2, but it is reported she will return for Series 3.[8]

Episode Title Based on Written by[8] Directed by Viewers
9-10 "Strange Affair" Strange AffairRobert MurphyTim Fywell5.10[23]
10 October 2012
17 October 2012

With DS Annie Cabbot about to take maternity leave, no-nonsense DI Helen Morton joins the team. A disturbing late-night message from his estranged brother Roy leads DCI Banks to go in search of him, without telling anyone. Meanwhile, DI Morton quickly alienates her colleagues with her tactless style at a murder scene, then makes matters worse by finding evidence linking Banks to the dead woman and speculating he could be a suspect. Banks delves deeper into Roy's life and uncovers questionable business transactions and associates. When Alan breaks the news to his parents that Roy has been murdered, they plead with him to find their son's killer. Defying Morton, Banks returns to Eastvale CID and attempts to lead both investigations. He and DI Morton become convinced the key to cracking both cases lies with a woman being treated at a family planning clinic.

First appearances of DI Helen Morton and Ch. Supt. Ron McLaughlin; temporary departure of DS Annie Cabbot 
11-12 "Dry Bones That Dream" Dry Bones That DreamRob WilliamsJim Loach5.46
24 October 2012
31 October 2012
A hitman bursts into the home of wealthy accountant Keith Rothwell, takes him to the garage and shoots him in cold blood, while his wife and daughter are inside the house. DCI Banks is instantly struck by the way the victim's family has responded to the shocking event. Evidence reveals Rothwell has been living a double life, and Banks and DI Helen Morton work together tentatively to investigate the murder of a mysterious victim with two identities. Possible links to a money-laundering operation plunge them into a high-profile fraud investigation with political ramifications. Alan's friend, Pamela Jefferies lies in a coma following a vicious attack, and Banks becomes even more determined to find Rothwell's killer. Against orders, he questions MP Martin Fleming, which puts him on a collision course with his former rival DCI Burgess. Meanwhile, DI Morton pursues another suspect and puts pressure on Rothwell's family. 
13-14 "Innocent Graves" Innocent GravesAndrew PayneMat King4.95
7 November 2012
8 November 2012
Frustrated that a number of cases have been knocked back by the Crown Prosecution Service, DCI Banks and his team are called on to investigate the murder of teenager Ellie Clayton, daughter of a high-profile Internet entrepreneur. The victim's background and the suggestion she may have been raped quickly make the incident the subject of media speculation, and strong evidence implicates a local theatre director who ran a drama workshop Ellie attended the night she was killed. Banks believes he's found his man, but DI Morton suspects her colleague isn't seeing the bigger picture. 


External links

  • Left Bank Pictures
  • Internet Movie Database
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